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Various Authors & Editors

Colonial-Period Korea
Japanese Works

During the period of Japanese influence and rule, large numbers of Japanese diplomats, officials, and scholars went to Korea. Many went to rule of course, but many also went to study the country and its culture. This resulted in a substantial body of both official and scholarly Japanese publications on Korea. The publications included here cover a broad range of subject matter, from art and archaeology to the sciences, and including education, natural history, religion, rural conditions, and more. Not surprisingly, a particularly large number of the publications relate to Japan's involvement with Korea. General works on Korean history and culture are also represented in substantial numbers. The publications present a thorough insight into colonial Korea from the colonizers' point of view.

This collection is also included in the Colonial-Period Korea collection.

Various Authors & Editors

Colonial-Period Korea
Korean Works

Not surprisingly, within Korea, resistance developed against Japanese rule, and resistance movements were organized. One example of resistance behavior was the use of the Korean language in publications, during a time Japanese was pronounced the official language and the use of Korean was discouraged. Columbia University's C.V. Starr East Asian Library holds a unique collection of Korean classical novels, printed in old printing type. The original texts of the collection are an invaluable bibliographical tool for researchers in the field of Korean literature during the Japanese colonial period. This was a time when there was a big increase of interest in Korean novels among the general public. Many popular works dealing with the classics were published in many different versions, with alterations which present research needs for verifying the transitions of classical works over the period. Since some of the texts are written in a very old form of the Korean language, the collection is of great interest among Korean language scholars as research sources on Korean archaic words and writing style. Their particular value, however, lies in the importance of this period, as well as in the rarity of these materials in both the U.S. and Korea.

This collection is also included in the Colonial-Period Korea collection.

Various Authors & Editors

Colonial-Period Korea
Western Works

During the period after Korea's "opening" Westerners were, for the first time, able to travel to and inside Korea. Some of these Westerners took this opportunity to observe the country, its people, and its culture and recorded their impressions of the "Hermit Kingdom." Barring one or two much earlier accounts, these are essentially the earliest Western impressions of Korea and Korean culture. Although a variety of subjects are covered in these publications, including history, religion, and more, the vast majority are written in a travelogue-like style.

This collection is also included in the Colonial-Period Korea collection.